Technology has changed every aspect of our lives in many direct and tangible ways. All of us now routinely access information ranging from how to change a tire to how far Mercury is from Saturn in just a matter of seconds. Technology has changed how we communicate with each other, how we watch TV and listen to music, how we buy things and pay our bills, how we learn about things and how we find our way from point A to point B.
How has all of this happened? Well, it’s not because Apple, Google, and your bank are interested in you having a better life. It is because they realize that innovative ways of doing things are essential to maintaining a competitive edge. It’s how they survive and grow. Consequently, industry makes huge investments in technology that end up making life better and more convenient for all of us.
But for governments and policymakers, the value of technology is often misunderstood and under-appreciated. Regrettably, technology investments and improvements in government systems do not win many votes for politicians. Consequently, it is easier for them to pay more attention to things that everyone more easily understands.